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Product and Topic Expert
Product and Topic Expert
Disclaimer: note that this blog was published prior to the re-branding related to SAP Build portfolio, which was announced at SAP TechEd 2022. SAP Launchpad service and SAP Work Zone come together under the SAP Build Work Zone brand, with two editions: standard edition (formerly SAP Launchpad service) and advanced edition (formerly SAP Work Zone). You can learn more in this blog post by Aviad Rivlin. See also the announcement for SAP Build. You can expect an updated FAQ blog post soon covering the new product setup and directions.

In this blog I give you answers to some questions that we (the SAP product managers) often get from customers and partners about SAP Work Zone and SAP Launchpad service.
I hope it helps you to learn about the product directions and what we also recommend for customers of our legacy products such as SAP Enterprise Portal or SAP Jam.

What are digital experience services on SAP BTP?
When we look at the portfolio of the digital experience services, SAP primarily focuses on two products that are both provided on SAP Business Technology Platform: SAP Launchpad service and SAP Work Zone. Both services are running on SAP Business Technology Platform multi-cloud environment.
When asked about typical challenges in their everyday work-life, employees often mention that they struggle to find the relevant information they are looking for, having to spend too much time switching between business applications or not even finding the relevant application they need to accomplish a given task.
The reality is that complex enterprise technology landscapes lead to sub-optimal user experiences that are heterogeneous and fragmented across a vast number of content types, UI tools, IT systems, content repositories, applications, and channels.
Digital experience services offer a solution to this problem. They enable companies, IT departments and employees to improve this situation by bringing everything together and by making consumption easier. Digital experience services are intended to deliver consistent and engaging user experience across all channels, business processes, and applications.

Why do we have two services available: SAP Work Zone and SAP Launchpad service and how are they related?
Both offerings share a common technology foundation and capability set. They aim to address similar use cases with Launchpad service offering the capability of the implementation of a central entry point and SAP Work Zone offering the same but adding additional capabilities.

  • SAP Launchpad service allows you to create an (SAP) application-centric entry point, providing a harmonized user experience layer that integrates applications, tasks, and notifications.

  • SAP Work Zone provides also everything you get with SAP Launchpad service, with additional capabilities that enable you to combine the application-centric experience with web content, documents and knowledge sharing as well as user engagement in discussion forums, feeds and more.

See also this image showing the digital experience services portfolio with SAP Launchpad service and SAP Work Zone:

What are the main use cases for customers?

Depending on the required use case, the following scenarios are recommended:

  • When customers want to implement a central access point for multiple back-end systems (SAP S/4HANA, SAP S/4HANA Cloud, SAP SuccessFactors): SAP Launchpad service is best solution.

  • When customers are asking in addition for a solution bringing together business apps and processes together with unstructured content (documents, videos, knowledge bases, etc.): then SAP Work Zone would be the service to choose.

You can also check out this blog for further information regarding the differences between SAP Launchpad service and SAP Work Zone: SAP Launchpad service versus SAP Work Zone.

What is the mobile strategy for the digital experience portfolio?

Both SAP Launchpad service and SAP Work Zone provide a native mobile client.

Already today, SAP Mobile Start is the native mobile client for the SAP Launchpad service. SAP Mobile Start retrieves most required data from the SAP Launchpad service, like the federated business application metadata for the user, which contains all relevant information for the client, including the list of applications for the user. For more information read the blog posts What is SAP Mobile Start? and SAP Mobile Start – the new native entry point to access applications & content.

SAP Work Zone has its own mobile app. Users can download and set up the SAP Work Zone app themselves. The app is available on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store.

The long-term strategy is to align the two mobile clients and evolve SAP Mobile Start to become the mobile client for SAP Work Zone also.

What is the product strategy for the next months?

You can expect improved user experience and navigation options for SAP Launchpad service including a flexible content structure for pages and spaces. As the content within the Launchpad service is expanded, the options for arranging the content are also extended: the capability to add and arrange content on pages using a flexible grid-based layout and intuitive page builder (similar to what you already know from SAP Work Zone). Also UI Integration Cards can be used to display any personalized content from connected systems directly into the launchpad.

In addition a new modern and intuitive user experience will be available for SAP Work Zone and SAP Launchpad service based on the Horizon visual theme and design.

It is the strategy for SAP Work Zone and SAP Launchpad service to become closer in terms of content model, administration tools and user experience.

For more information, check out the roadmaps:
SAP Launchpad Service 
SAP Work Zone 

Watch also this video with Andreas Schlosser, Vice President of Engineering leading the team delivering Digital Experience Services on SAP BTP. In this video Andreas gives you an overview on the Digital Experience Services portfolio of SAP represented by SAP Launchpad Service and SAP Work Zone, explains why this area is a key priority for SAP and he talks about future investments and roadmap:

Which products and services include the entitlement for the Launchpad service?

Did you already know that there are also a few services on SAP BTP, which are free of charge and are included as part of the entitlements for all RISE with SAP customers? This is also the case for SAP Launchpad service, which is included in every RISE with SAP license (except NS2 and China, we are currently working on this) to help customers build a modern user experience, both on the desktop and on mobile devices.

RISE with SAP customers can use the SAP Launchpad service and also SAP Mobile Start without additional costs and without consumption of CPEA cloud credits and enable users to find all relevant apps and information in one central location and seamlessly integrate content from various systems.

For more information, read the blog: Expand the value of RISE with SAP by adopting the SAP Launchpad service.

Can customers upgrade from SAP Launchpad service to SAP Work Zone?

Customers can transport content from SAP Launchpad service to SAP Work Zone. However this will require manual efforts by the customer. More information: see SAP Documentation.

The long-term strategy is to bring SAP Launchpad service and SAP Work Zone closer together from a technology perspective, which will result in enabling a smoother upgrade path for customers from Launchpad to Work Zone.

Is SAP Work Zone and SAP Launchpad service available in SAP BTP trial environment or with the free tier offering?

SAP Launchpad service is available in the free tier model of SAP BTP and is also part of the trial landscape. For more information, see in the Discovery Center under Pricing.
SAP Work Zone is available for Subscription, CPEA and Pay-As-You-Go, see in the Discover Center under Pricing. The availability in the free tier model or also in the trial environment is planned for the future, the exact date is not yet available for now.

What is the future of the SAP Cloud Portal service?

The SAP Cloud Portal service continues to be supported (on both Neo and CF environments). The launchpad experience of the portal will continue to be enhanced over time with new capabilities. Freestyle sites are not planned to be enhanced anymore. For additional information, see SAP Note 2902576.

Existing Cloud Portal customers can continue using the Cloud Portal service – there is no end-of-support date for the Cloud Portal service. You can find the roadmap here.

Customers who implemented the Launchpad site template (on the multi-cloud environment of SAP BTP) could consider a transition to SAP Launchpad service. Read these 3 blogs listed below and you will get some insights and recommendations on how to move from your existing SAP Cloud Portal service to the SAP Launchpad service within the same subaccount or in different subaccounts. The aim is the reuse of existing configuration and content, to avoid the need to configure everything from scratch:

Please note that the Launchpad service does not support freestyle sites, so your freestyle sites and content cannot be moved to in the Launchpad service.

Customers who implemented freestyle sites could consider a transition to SAP Work Zone, but you should note that there is no 1:1 equivalence between freestyle sites and SAP Work Zone capabilities.

What is the future of SAP Enterprise Portal?

SAP already announced the extension of the mainstream maintenance of SAP SAP Enterprise Portal 7.5 to be continued to the end of 2027, with extended maintenance to 2030.

As a general strategic approach, we recommend to transition your SAP Enterprise Portal use cases to SAP Business Technology Platform (SAP BTP), multi-cloud environment. As SAP puts major investments in SAP Business Technology Platform, customers automatically get the latest innovations, also regarding the SAP Fiori UX. Note that moving from SAP NetWeaver Platform to SAP Business Technology Platform requires a comprehensive analysis of your current use cases. SAP Business Technology Platform offers various micro services to help you implementing your scenario with more flexibility, it is not like the monolithic-like EP usage type. For more information, see this page on SAP Community.

Going forward we recommend SAP Enterprise Portal customers considering a transition to SAP BTP multi-cloud environment, in particular to SAP Launchpad service or to SAP Work Zone. SAP recommends adopting SAP Launchpad service or SAP Work Zone (depending on the use case) for new projects, and a gradual transition of existing SAP EP based scenarios to SAP BTP:

  • If mainly the integration of business apps and a central entry point is required – SAP Launchpad service is recommended.

  • If the customer is looking to bring together business apps side by side with unstructured content and business apps - SAP Work Zone is recommended.

What is the future of SAP Jam Collaboration ?

SAP Jam Collaboration is no longer available for purchase and is in maintenance mode, with the plan to sunset the product by January 2027. While no new enhancements will be made, it remains fully supported in accordance with existing cloud contracts. Details are in the following blog.
Check out the SAP Jam Collaboration Community page for more information, also about recommendations about the successor products.

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You can learn more about SAP Launchpad service and SAP Work Zone by: